Ramayana : An Ancient Indian Epic

A short Puppet Presentation
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Puranas Ltd has been formed by Neelima Penumarthy and aims to connect cultures through stories. In 2016, Neelima’s sons, Shreyas Pulle and Ayur Pulle (then aged 17 and 12) published their one-hour audiobook titled Ramayana: An Ancient Indian Epic (Audible UK; Audible India). The audiobook was judged by The Times (UK) as one of the “Best audiobooks of 2017”. British Airways selected the audiobook for their in-flight entertainment on all long-haul flights – after a trial period of one year, BA have renewed this contract until 2028.

Neelima explored the possibility of conveying this beautiful narration through puppets. She brought together a team of very experienced puppet designer, puppet makers and puppeteers and produced a 15- minute puppet show preview. Puranas’multi-cultural group of puppeteers performed the preview at the Mayor of London sponsored Diwali celebrations at Trafalgar Square in 2018.

The organizers have asked Puranas to perform again at Trafalgar Square for Diwali 2019. Mr & Mrs Palan, the founders of The Palan Foundation are sponsoring this year’s work and performances.

The Team
Neelima Penumarthy - Creative Director / Producer. Neelima came to the UK in 1996 on the British Chevening scholarship to study Chemistry at Imperial College, London. She worked as a Java developer for a few years. Since quitting full-time work, she has been exploring creative ways to engage children. Her journey started with her own sons through the re-telling and narration of the ancient Indian Epic, Ramayana. She has brought together a team of very talented puppet designers, puppet makers and puppeteers to convey the audiobook through beautiful, handcrafted puppets. 

Gillie Robic - was born in India, her great love and inspiration. She is the Designer and Director of this puppet show, Ramayana: An Ancient Indian Epic. As a puppeteer she has performed many film and television characters, and also live theatre, often with her own company, Suspended Animation.  She is also a poet. Her poems have appeared in the UK and the US. Her first poetry collection, Swimming Through Marble, was shortlisted and published in 2016 by Live Canon.  Her second collection is due out in October.

Peter Provys - is an animation graduate, and studied at London School of Puppetry. He has built and performed with classic marrionettes, lip syncs and rod puppets. He also has operated giant carnival puppets and exhibited marrionettes made from recycled materials.

Amber Donovan - is a freelance puppeteer; maker, designer and collaborative artist trained at RADA and is a recent graduate of The Curious School of Puppetry.

Aurora Adams - Aurora Adams is a London based puppeteer, physical actor and screenwriter/producer with a passion for creating original works on stage and screen.

​Joseph Micheal Peek - is 17 years old and has been performing in Punch and Judy style puppet shows for over 10 years. He has recently started working with marrionets, and makes his own Jim Henson inspired Muppet Puppets.

Roger Lade - Puppet Maker

Jan Zalud - Puppet Maker

Sian Kidd - Puppet Maker

Robin Christian - Robin is a talented flutist and a music composer. He composed the background score for the puppet show. He continues to share, enjoy and humbly contribute to the music world and plays in the North Indian tradition.

Saachi Sen - Saachi Sen is a Mumbai-born, London-grown, Indie-Pop singer/songwriter. Since the age of 12, her music has taken her from onscreen on Disney Channel UK, to onstage in Trafalgar Square, playing live to 10,000 people at Pride in London 2019. Saachi has also been a Resident Artist at Camden’s Roundhouse, and recipient of PRS for Music’s Lynsey de Paul songwriting prize.

Avi Simmons - Avi is a UK singer-songwriter based in the Pilgrim's City of Canterbury. She performs live across the UK, solo, or with her 2-piece band. Avi is committed to telling stories. Her solo work pulls the listener into an inevitable journey.Puranas has commissioned Avi to compose a song capturing the essence of the Ramayana. Avi will be singing the closing song for the puppet show.

Puranas has commissioned Saachi and Avi to compose a song capturing the essence of the Ramayana. Saachi will open the show with this song and Avi will sing the closing song.

In Association with SAMA Arts Network